verbfelt, feel·ing, feels
a. To perceive through the sense of touch: feel the velvety smoothness of a peach.
b. To perceive as a physical sensation: feel a sharp pain; feel the cold.
a. To touch: reached out and felt the wall.
To examine by touching: felt the fabric for flaws.
See Synonyms at touch
- To test or explore with caution: feel one's way in a new job.
a. To undergo the experience of: felt my interest rising; felt great joy.
b. To be aware of; sense: felt the anger of the crowd.
c. To be emotionally affected by: She still feels the loss of her dog.
a. To be persuaded of (something) on the basis of intuition, emotion, or other indefinite grounds: I feel that what the informant says may well be true.
b. To believe; think: She felt his answer to be evasive.
- To experience the sensation of touch.
a. To produce a particular sensation, especially through the sense of touch: The sheets felt smooth.
b. To produce a particular impression; appear to be; seem: It feels good to be home. See Usage Note at well 2.
- To be conscious of a specified kind or quality of physical, mental, or emotional state: felt warm and content; feels strongly about the election.
- To seek or explore something by the sense of touch: felt for the light switch in the dark.
- To have compassion or sympathy: I feel for him in his troubles.
Phrasal Verbs: feel out
- Perception by touch or by sensation of the skin: a feel of autumn in the air.
- The sense of touch: a surface that is rough to the feel.
a. An act or instance of touching or feeling: gave the carpet a feel.
b. Vulgar An act or instance of sexual touching or fondling.
- An overall impression or effect: “gives such disparate pictures … a crazily convincing documentary feel” ( Stephen King )
- Intuitive awareness or natural ability: has a feel for decorating.
To try cautiously or indirectly to ascertain the viewpoint or nature of: We'd better feel out the situation before acting. feel up Vulgar
To touch or fondle (someone) sexually.
Origin of feel
Middle English felen from
Old English fēlan
; see pāl-
in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present feels, present participle feeling, simple past and past participle felt)
- To use the sense of touch.
- (copulative) To become aware of through the skin; to use the sense of touch on.
- You can feel a heartbeat if you put your fingers on your breast.
- I felt downright hot and miserable evening at night.
- To find one's way (literally or figuratively) by touching or using cautious movements.
- I felt my way through the darkened room.
- I felt my way cautiously through the dangerous business maneuver.
- (intransitive) To receive information by touch or by any neurons other than those responsible for sight, smell, taste, or hearing.
- (intransitive) To search by sense of touch.
- He felt for the light switch in the dark.
- To sense or think emotionally or judgmentally.
- To experience an emotion or other mental state about.
- I can feel the sadness in his poems.
- To think, believe, or have an impression concerning.
- I feel that we need to try harder.
- (intransitive, copulative) To experience an emotion or other mental state.
- He obviously feels strongly about it.
- She felt even more upset when she heard the details.
- (intransitive) To sympathise; to have the sensibilities moved or affected.
- I feel for you and your plight.
- To be or become aware of.
- To experience the consequences of.
- Feel my wrath!
- (copulative) To seem (through touch or otherwise).
- It looks like wood, but it feels more like plastic.
- This is supposed to be a party, but it feels more like a funeral!
- (US, slang) To understand.
- I don't want you back here, ya feel me?
- Most prescriptive grammarians prefer "I feel bad" to "I feel badly", but "I feel badly" is widely used in US English.
- Badly is sometimes used after feel in its copulative sense where one might expect an adjective, ie, bad.
- Some users use badly when referring to an emotional state, and bad when referring to a more physical or medical state.
- Adjectives to which "feel" is often applied as a copula: free, cold, cool, warm, hot, young, old, good, great, fine, happy, glad, satisfied, excited, bad, depressed, unhappy, sad, blue, sorry, smart, stupid, loved, appreciated, accepted, rejected, lonely, isolated, insulted, offended, slighted, cheated, shy, refreshed, tired, exhausted, calm, relaxed, angry, annoyed, frustrated, anxious, worried, jealous, proud, confident, safe, grateful, uncomfortable, unsafe, insecure, desperate, guilty, ashamed, disappointed, dirty, odd, strange, ill, sick.
- A quality of an object experienced by touch.
- Bark has a rough feel.
- A vague mental impression.
- You should get a feel of the area before moving in.
- An act of fondling.
- She gave me a quick feel to show that she loves me.
- A vague understanding
- I'm getting a feel for what you mean.
- An intuitive ability
- She has a feel for music.
- Alternative form of feeling
- I know that feel.
From Middle English felen, from Old English fēlan (“to feel, perceive, touch”), from Proto-Germanic *fōlijaną (“to taste, feel”), from Proto-Indo-European *pelem-, *pal- (“to swing, shake”). Cognate with Scots fele (“to feel”), West Frisian fiele (“to sense, feel”), Dutch voelen (“to feel”), Low German fölen (“to feel”), föhlen, German fühlen (“to feel”), Danish føle (“to feel”), and through Indo-European, with Latin palpō (“touch, feel, caress, pat”), Ancient Greek πάλλω (pállō, “swing, shake, shake loose”).
- Alternative form of fele.
- Alternative form of fele.
From Middle English feele, fele, feole, from Old English fela, feala, feolo (“much, many”), from Proto-Germanic *felu (“very, much”), from Proto-Indo-European *pélu- (“many”). Cognate with Scots fele (“much, many, great”), Dutch veel (“much, many”), German viel (“much, many”), Latin plūs (“more”), Ancient Greek πολύς (polýs, “many”). Related to full.